September 2023 Newsletter

From Pastor Matthew Nelson

Greetings to all of you in the St. Paul’s congregation and friends of St. Paul’s. It is exciting to have begun getting to know you and I hope I will get to know each of you well. I would love to find a time to connect with you and hear about you and your story, to pray with you, and bring God’s Word to you. Please feel free to let me know if you would like a visit from me, or would like to meet up with my family I would love to join you for an activity, whether it be work, an event, or just fellowship. I know that the Good Shepherd wants his under-shepherds to know the flock that He has entrusted to them, so I want to know you. We are also the family of God, and so I want to know you as a my own family. Below I am going to try to share a little about myself and my family to help get things started. Maybe you’ll find something that is of common interest or at least a conversation starter!

Lori and I will be celebrating our 15th wedding anniversary on Valentine’s Day in 2024! She has been such a blessing in my life. We got to know each other when I served at her home congregation in Cokato, Minnesota. Lori and I both went to the Association Free Lutheran Bible School. Lori attended from 1999-2001 and I attended from 2001-2003. We just missed each other. Lori worked as a Dorm assistant after my time there and she studied accounting for her undergrad. She worked in that field for a while before resigning so she could travel to the Republic of Congo, in Africa, to help her sister on the mission field with her children’s schooling and things around the house. Lori loved helping her nieces and wanted to work with children when she got back. Instead of returning to accounting Lori got a job helping with a school that specialized in teaching children who are on the autism spectrum. Lori is very compassionate and passionate about helping people with special needs. It runs in her family too! Lori worked for her congregation’s preschool for a while and is now teaching our four daughters and tutoring for the Fargo Classical Conversations Homeschool Community.

My oldest daughter Sophia is 13 years old and loves to take care of little children, to act in school plays, to sing, and draw. Corinne, my second-born, will be 12 soon. She is my little daredevil who does everything with intensity! She is a rabid book reader who wants to spend her birthday at the library, but also likes bombing the fastest ski slopes, climbing trees, and wrestling her dad. Naomi, the next in line, is 7 years old. She is a little actress who is known for her numerous giggle-fits, impromptu shows and concerts, and for her creativity in composing music and plays and anything that requires a vivid imagination. Leona, or My Wild Thing, as I like to call her, is the youngest at 4 years old. She, like our other red-head Corinne, is, as Lori says, “spicy.” She loves getting tickled by her daddy, snuggling, playing imagination games with Naomi, and letting everyone know what they should be doing. Last and least, we have the other male in the house, a mini-golden doodle named Captain Benjamin Ulysses Crunch. “Benji,” as we call him, is two years old and is a great family dog.

As far as I am concerned, my wife tells me I have too many hobbies. I enjoy riding my motorcycle, playing guitar, sports, hunting and fishing, cooking/eating all sorts of foods (especially spicy ones!), roasting/brewing fine coffee, boating and swimming and going on outdoor adventures. I love to dabble in all sorts of things, so I hope I can connect with you on the things that you love to do! Yet what I and my family care about most is our gracious God and Savior and sharing His love with others. We know that all of these good things come from Him (James 1:17) and we can’t wait to live in His blessings with you.

For everything created by God is good, and nothing is to be rejected if it is received with thanksgiving, for it is made holy by the word of God and prayer.

The Holy Bible: English Standard Version (Wheaton, IL: Crossway Bibles, 2016), 1 Ti 4:4–5.

View the September 2023 Newsletter here.